Microgrid Talk: The IRA means great things for the microgrid industry

Oct. 18, 2022
In the latest edition of Microgrid Talk, experts share the many ways they think the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) will impact the microgrid industry.
Wider access and adoption, greater demand and increased collaboration with utilities are three of the biggest things the microgrid industry can expect to see as a result of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), according to top industry experts.

In our latest edition of Microgrid Talk, Elisa Wood, editor-in-chief of Microgrid Knowledge, discusses the new legislation with Jana Gerber of Schneider Electric, Jaimie Hamilton of Cummins and Chris Ellis of PowerSecure. All three are excited about the endorsement of microgrid technology within the bill.

With the IRA, microgrids will no longer be just for large companies with teams of people charged with meeting sustainability goals, according to Jaimie Hamilton, technical adviser at Cummins. “We have the opportunity to bring microgrids to a much wider market,” she says. “Having the ability for tax exempt entities to monetize tax credits is going to be really helpful in making microgrids more easily adopted by a variety of different types of consumers.”

Jana Gerber, North American microgrid president for Schneider Electric, is also bullish on the impact of the legislation because there are now more financial incentives for utilities to look at microgrids. “There’s a lot of funding in the IRA around the evaluation of the effects of electrification and non-transmission alternatives,” Gerber says. She believes that’s going to spur more collaboration between utilities and microgrid providers.

The IRA is both creating the demand for microgrids and encouraging the response to that demand, says Chris Ellis, executive vice president of distributed infrastructure for PowerSecure.  By “increasing the amount of electric vehicles through its incentives, while at the same time providing credit and incentives for renewable energy sources, the IRA is a win-win to increase the demand for microgrids,” Ellis says.

Gerber, Ellis and Hamilton agree that it won’t take long for the impact of the bill to be felt. Hamilton notes the bill requires some implementations by January 2025. She says, “With those aggressive timelines, it’s going to help move things along and make people react much more quickly than they might be if we were talking about things in 2030 and beyond.”

The video also includes a discussion on the impact the bill will have on hydrogen production.

Watch this Microgrid Talk video, which is part three of a three-part series. You can also catch up on parts one and two.

About the Author

Kathy Hitchens | Special Projects Editor

I work as a writer and special projects editor for Microgrid Knowledge. I have over 30 years of writing experience, working with a variety of companies in the renewable energy, electric vehicle and utility sector, as well as those in the entertainment, education, and financial industries. I have a BFA in Media Arts from the University of Arizona and a MBA from the University of Denver.

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